The Growing Value of Online Sports Content

Dimitar Serafimov | Thu Jul 05 2018 | Industry insights

Sports TV viewing

The value of sports content shows signs of exponential rise, and broadcasters are not afraid to make the proper investments with the new viewing trends increasingly leaning towards online. 

With the World Cup in full swing, it's easy to see the buzz, excitement, and sense of camaraderie that sporting games, matches or events provide. That said, it's little wonder why sports-based content is so very popular.

To put the power of sports content into perspective, data supplied by online video analyst Conviva discovered that the World Cup enjoyed a peak of 7.7 million simultaneous streaming viewers during the Argentina vs Iceland match on June 16th. This number beat this year’s Super Bowl by more than two million viewers.

The "online dimension" adds more value to sports viewing

As a result of its exponential growth, a growing number of sports channels have emerged to accommodate its ever-growing demand.

Sports viewing online

Among younger digital natives, in particular,  emerging online channels present an essential opportunity for sporting leagues to engage this demographic. Increasingly, this cohort chooses to consume TV content throughout the day, with around 50% doing so on mobile.

As a result of this trend, a great deal of sports leagues are looking to social media as a potential distribution channel as they migrate online.

The prominence of video on social media, the continual rise of live streaming, and the incredible reach of the likes of Facebook, Twitter, and Snapchat, positions social alongside traditional broadcasters as distribution agreements are getting ready for renewal.

Big broadcasters bait to combat sports despite inflated rights prices

Having identified the power and potential of online sports content and distribution, a host of combat sports are stepping further into the arena, signing big bucks deals for their web-based offerings. The likes of WWE and UFC TV have been wooed by Fox Sports and ESPN, with both broadcasters investing significant amounts to secure their content rights, respectively.

Fox Sports reportedly spent in excess of $1 billion to acquire the rights to the WWE’s weekly live series, SmackDown, a show that boasts an average of over 2.5 million viewers each Tuesday night on USA Network.

In both instances, the broadcasters will fit these combat sporting events into their subscription-based and direct-to-consumer viewing models, giving their fans the freedom, flexibility, and autonomy to enjoy their favorite action-packed content at their leisure.

As the value of online sporting content continues to rise, presenting an ever-growing wealth of distribution channels and opportunities, it’s never been the better time to enter the race. In today’s world, online sports content is worth its weight in gold and with the right offerings and presentation, success is more or less inevitable.

Learn more about the new developments in sports broadcasting:

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